President Donald Trump on Wednesday suggested in a tweet aimed at Russian Federation that the United States will conduct a missile strike on Syria.
The tweet references Russia's support for Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad, who stands accused of using chemical weapons against the rebel-held town of Douma.
Chemical weapons attacks have killed hundreds of people since the start of Syria's conflict, with the United Nations blaming four attacks on the Syrian regime and a fifth on the Islamic State group.
In subsequent messages, he said the United States' relationship with Russian Federation is at the worst point at any time, including during the Cold War, and blamed the issues in part on the ongoing investigation into election meddling.
"Smart missiles must fly towards terrorists, not a legitimate government that has been fighting worldwide terrorism in its territory for several years", said Russia's foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova in a Facebook post.
Just two weeks ago, Trump was calling for USA troops to withdraw fully from Syria, Coons added, and he thinks that partly created the current crisis. "Stop the arms race?" he wrote.
Trump did not detail what a strike would look like, or whether these would be U.S. missiles.
On Monday, Trumpvowed during a Cabinet meeting at the White House that the United States would make "some major decisions over the next 24 to 48 hours" on how to respond to a suspected chemical attack in Syria over the weekend, which he called "atrocious".
Former Secretary of Defence Ash Carter, speaking in Senate testimony in late 2015, said at the time that the vast majority of Russia's strikes in Syria, some 85 to 90 per cent, "use dumb bombs, which obviously increases the possibility of civilian casualties".
The Syrian government and its ally Russian Federation have denied that such an attack ever happened.
Trump has also promisedtime and time again that he doesn't telegraph USA military moves because doing so gives the enemy an unnecessary advantage.
In an interview with Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV station, Mr Zasypkin said any missiles fired at Syria would be shot down and the launching sites targeted.
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